By Maureen Aylward
Microsoft is about to release Office 365, a cloud-computing platform. The demand for cloud services and products could mean the next wave of technology expansion. Our Zintro experts let us in on their thinking about the market and where is it trending.
Robert Cummings, a cloud computing consultant, says that cloud computing creates a level playing field for common applications such as mail, accounting systems, HR systems, and other standard pipelines of information. “It allows the small and medium-size business the opportunity to access and use the same applications as much larger organizations,” he says.
Backup systems and data security are critical, as are privacy polices and communication with stakeholders. “Making sure your cloud provider is compliant in areas like brokerage or healthcare is critical,” says Cummings. “Companies need to ensure that cloud providers are handling data according to the organization’s wishes.”
Cummings says that the cloud evolution will cause IT professionals to take a more architectural view of data and information flow. “Capacity may not be an issue but design, compliance, and strategy of information move to the forefront,” he says. “Properly deployed cloud computing makes sense, like connecting to a power grid. The trend will be toward creating an information grid.”
- A cloud approach makes the consumption of the technology simple;
- Cloud computing lowers the overall operational cost of running and supporting an application; and
- With the advent of private hybrid clouds and other models, cloud computing enables customers to quickly deploy an application while controlling and securing data. Customers get the provider to manage the application while they keep data secure and under their control.
“The cloud is redefining how customers will consume technology, and it is forcing everyone to develop and deploy the lean approach. Customers can expect new application features to be deployed rapidly instead of going through a long cycle,” says Queralt. “The greatest impact is cost, both on the frontend acquisition side and in ongoing maintenance.”
Roger Pasquier, a broadcast and management consultant, says that there is no question the trend is toward cloud computing, but the market has concerns about security. “Security of data will be the defining issue in whether cloud usage trends sharply upward or remains subdued,” he says. “Although people using the platform understand that security is better in the cloud than most company in-house systems, the current perception is that sending confidential information via a cloud platform is risky. More explanation and understanding of this false assumption is need before the cloud expands into the mainstream of business.”
What do you think?
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